Santiago de Cuba: Home of the Revolution

See important booking information below regarding travel to Cuba.*

Santiago de Cuba, located on the southeast end of the island, was the starting point of the Cuban Revolution and is currently the second largest city in Cuba. With its beautiful plazas spilling over with a colorful musical tradition, this city is unlike any other. Due to its blend of cultures – Spanish conquistadors, pirates, French planters and Haitian settlers – Santiago de Cuba has a distinctive Caribbean spirit that is felt in its art and music.

The colonial homes of Parque Cespedes, the historic Santa Ifigenia Cemetery, the Basílica Santuario Nacional de Nuestra Señora de la Caridad del Cobre and UNESCO World Heritage site San Pedro de la Roca Castle all call this city home. Outside the city lies beautiful scenery such as Pico Turquino, Cuba’s highest peak in the Sierra Maestra Mountains; the Coastal Santiago-Pilón, a scenic highway exploring mountains, beaches and sea; and the UNESCO-recognized Archaeological Landscape of the First Coffee Plantations.


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Please note that star ratings for the hotels in Cuba are not comparable with hotels of the same star ratings in other Caribbean destinations. Quality of hotels, room furnishings, amenities, service levels, meal plans and menus are not compatible with those of other Caribbean destinations and special needs or requests are unlikely to be met. It is important to keep in mind that traveling to Cuba is about the experience.

Transfer services are unavailable for pre-purchase in Cuba. Transportation can be arranged upon arrival.

*COMPLIANCE WITH U.S. LAW: U.S. law prohibits U.S. travelers from traveling to Cuba for tourism. U.S. travelers can only go to Cuba for one of 12 authorized reasons, including family visits and people-to-people educational activities. The 12 categories are listed in the Cuban Assets Control Regulations [CACR] at Section 515.560 (a)(1)-(12) and described in more detail in those identified sections of the CACR, HERE. It is the U.S. traveler’s sole responsibly to understand and comply with existing restrictions under U.S. law. Each U.S. traveler is required under U.S. law to retain records of their travel to Cuba for five years. The U.S. government could ask you to produce those records.

*CUBA TRAVEL CERTIFICATION: Each U.S. traveler must complete a written certification, available HERE, identifying the travel category that authorizes his or her travel to Cuba in order to allow Vacation Express to book that travel. Vacation Express must obtain this certification and retain it for five years, as required under Section 515.572(b) of the CACR. Should you have any questions about the requirements of U.S. law relating to your travel to Cuba, please consult a lawyer.